Hotel Secrets from the Travel Detective Never order Eggs Benedict at a hotel (it will arrive cold). Avoid penthouses (firefighters can't reach them). In his latest book on how to make yourself comfortable on the road, travel expert Peter Greenberg offers these tips and more:

LOAD UP AT THE QUICKIE MART: The minibar acts like a vacuum to the money in your wallet, as anyone who's paid $7 for a bottled water knows. "Bring your own sodas and snacks," he says. "I tell the bellhop to empty out the minibar in my room, that way I'm not paying $100 for a diet Coke."

WATCH WHAT YOU ORDER: Room service is a fun luxury, but some foods suffer en route. "Never order anything toasted or fried. In a lot of hotels, you need an air traffic controller to travel from the kitchen to your room. A salad is a good choice, but always ask for the dressing on the side. Otherwise, you'll end up with a soggy mess."

LOOK FOR SPACE: Luxury hotels sometimes cram in as many rooms as possible. "I could happily move into the Four Seasons' bathrooms in New York," he says. The W Hotel is a different story. "You need a spatula to get into the room. You do serious injury to your shins and ankles every time you walk in the room."

NEGOTIATE: Bargain with a sales manager—never someone who answers the 800 phone line—for a lower price. "Hotel rates are very fluid. It's the law of supply and demand," he says. "If you happen to call when a wedding party has suddenly dropped out, leaving the hotel with 50 empty rooms, boy, you are in the driver's seat."

  • Contributors:
  • Sean Daly,
  • Bella Stander,
  • Edward Nawotka,
  • Edward Karam,
  • Arion Berger,
  • Scott Nybakken,
  • Susan Christian Goulding.